2Google Nexus One
The Google Nexus One is an obvious choice for a smartphone that would have been much better with iOS 4. By only offering the device online, Google’s smartphone was supposed to change the way consumers purchased mobile phones. But it failed miserably at achieving that goal, and now, the device is available in T-Mobile retail outlets. But if the Nexus One was running iOS 4, Google might have succeeded in changing mobile retail. The Nexus One is a nice device in its own right, but it can’t match the iPhone or Apple’s software. With iOS 4’s multitasking, folder support and the Apple logo to help out, consumers could be buying smartphones in a much different way today.
Although Dell’s Streak runs Android OS, it’s not a stretch to say that it would be a far more effective competitor to the iPad if it was running iOS 4. For one thing, the iPad doesn’t have iOS 4 running, so it could trump Apple’s tablet on software. But beyond that, it’s important to remember that in the tablet space, apps mean everything. Currently, Apple offers more than 200,000 applications in its store. Google’s Android Market has a fraction of that. Thanks to iOS 4, the Streak could offer more apps, and thus, a greater value proposition to consumers.
4Apple White MacBook
There’s little reason for Apple to continue to offer its white MacBook. Not only is the $999 device obsolete compared to the company’s 13-inch MacBook Pro models, it’s also being trumped by the iPad. But if the notebook was running iOS 4, Apple might have an easier time selling the computer. Unlike the iPad and iPhone, which require a touch screen to work, iOS 4 could run on a full-fledged computer, complete with a physical keyboard. It could make users far more productive and transform the notebook market forever. It’s not such a bad idea.
When Apple released the iPad, it made it abundantly clear that its target was netbooks. The tablet, which features a 9.7-inch display, is designed to be the mobile companion for folks that want to be able to perform simple tasks while away from the home. Netbooks perform the same basic function for consumers. But as the iPad continues to sell well, netbooks are losing steam. Google says that Chrome OS will be the savior to revive netbooks, but that’s a long shot. What netbooks really need to re-emerge in the computing space is iOS 4. It would combine the best of both worlds in one device.
Time and again, Apple has said that its Apple TV set-top box is a “hobby” product designed for those that want iTunes connectivity on their televisions. But with Google recently announcing its Google TV solution, which allow the company to offer software to hardware vendors that’s capable of both searching the Web and local cable programming, the onus is on Apple to respond. It can respond effectively if it puts iOS 4 on the Apple TV. That would make the device far more capable of competing with the Google TV, thanks to its Web-browsing, e-mail and applications. It would be like turning a television into an iPhone. Not bad.
7Motorola Droid X
The Motorola Droid X is undoubtedly one of the most capable iPhone alternatives ever released. But when it launches, the phone will feature Android OS 2.1, which by almost all accounts, can’t compete on any level with iOS 4. Realizing that, Motorola might have some trouble attracting those customers that want iPhone-like functionality in a device that’s available on Verizon’s network. But with the help of iOS 4, all that could change. The Droid X would not only appeal to more customers, it would arguably be a more capable device than the iPhone 4. It will never happen, of course, but an iOS 4-equipped Droid X could be an outstanding product.
It might sound odd to include a device that actually runs iOS in this roundup, but so far, Apple has yet to release iOS 4 for the iPad. The company said that it will be coming to Apple’s tablet at some point in the next few months, but it has been tight-lipped on what the exact date will be. Until then, iPad owners will be forced to use outdated software. That’s unfortunate. Current iPhone customers looking to have similar functionality on the iPad will be disappointed after buying Apple’s tablet. The sooner iOS 4 comes to the iPad, the better.
RIM’s BlackBerry OS is arguably the least-capable mobile operating system on the market behind Windows Mobile. Although the company is trying to get its operating system to match iOS, it’s just not working. Plus, the BlackBerry App World features an abysmal number of programs that most users just don’t want. It’s a major issue for RIM as it tries to compete against the iPhone. With iOS 4’s help, the BlackBerry would be an entirely different device. Not only would it offer more applications, but the value proposition for enterprise customers could go up. It could deliver all the functionality missing in BlackBerry OS and combine that with the solutions, like BlackBerry Enterprise Server, that so many companies rely on. It’s certainly a nice thought, isn’t it?
10Sony PlayStation 3
When determining which game console would work best with iOS 4, Sony’s PlayStation 3 immediately came to mind. Unlike the Wii, which is designed to be a gaming-only product, and the Xbox 360, which is focused on online-gaming, Sony has marketed the PlayStation 3 as a home-entertainment product designed to do more than allow people to play games. Realizing that, it seems like an obvious candidate for iOS 4. The console could leverage the software’s browser and e-mail functionality. And considering games are such a key component in the App Store, giving users the option to buy casual games for play on the PS3 would be a welcome addition.
11Garmin Nuvi GPS Devices
Over the past few years, Garmin’s Nuvi GPS devices have become more than just products that help consumers get from one location to another. That’s precisely why it would be nice to see iOS 4 come to the company’s many GPS products. While driving, it would be nice to have an iPhone-like device sitting in a holster attached to the windshield. It would make it much easier to check e-mails, place calls and perform other basic tasks through the products. And all the while, the device could boast Garmin’s outstanding mapping solutions. Admittedly, users can do something similar with TomTom’s navigation tools, but an iOS 4-equipped Garmin Nuvi would be ideal.